Operations adding value to society

Gyöngyi Kovacs*, Markku Kuula, Stefan Seuring, Constantin Blome

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialScientificpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this article is to discuss the role of operations management in society. The article detects trends, raises critical questions to operations management research and articulates a research agenda to increase the value of such research in addressing societal problems.
This paper evaluates the papers presented at the EurOMA 2019 conference to detect trends and discuss the contributions of operations management research to society. It further goes to identify gaps in the research agenda.
The article finds several important streams of research in operations management: sustainable operations and supply chains, health care and humanitarian operations, innovation, digitalisation and 4.0, risk and resilience. It highlights new trends such as circular economy research and problematises when to stop implementing innovation and how to address and report their potential failure. Importantly, it shows how it is not just a question of offshoring vs reshoring but of constant change in manufacturing that operations management addresses.
The article highlights not just novel research areas but also gaps in the research agenda where operations management seeks to add value to society.
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalInternational Journal of Operations & Production Management
Issue number9
Pages (from-to)1293-1300
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 01.12.2020
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed
Event26th EurOMA Conference: Operations adding value to society - Helsinki, Finland
Duration: 17.06.201919.06.2019
Conference number: 26


  • 512 Business and Management
  • operations management
  • supply chain management
  • logistics
  • sustainability

Areas of Strength and Areas of High Potential (AoS and AoHP)

  • AoHP: Humanitarian and societal logistics


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